Penguin Around Cape Town, South Africa
The flight to Cape Town from Los Angeles was perhaps the longest I’ve ever endured: 11 hours to Amsterdam, and another 11 hours to Cape Town. I arrived into the city late in the evening. Exhaustion had taken over. My alarm blared at 9am and all I wanted to do was to turn off my alarm and just lay there, eyes shut for a full day. I had to make the most of my very short vacation.
My room, a modern chic apartment was comfortable in size for one but cramp for my party of three. My friends crashed for a night after making a last minute decision to meet me in Cape Town. We slowly got ready and made a quick plan to visit Simonstown to see the penguin and practically play by ear from there.
Things to Do:
Simon’s Town – Boulders Beach
Simons Town is a beach city where the penguins roam freely on the sand. I’ve always seen photos of these mysterious penguins who live far from the snow. We parked at Boulders Beach, the most famous of them all. There were ample of parking and the beach was free in some areas. To go through the wooden walkway, there is a small fee of R65 that you can pay by the ticketing window.
It was mating season so the penguins were active! Penguins were swimming, splashing, humping and climbing up boulders. As cute as they are, keep your hands at bay. Those little creatures can be violent.
Later in the evening, we visited Table Mountain, one of the New 7 Natural Wonders of the World.The best time to visit Table Mountain is before sunrise or sunset. It is absolutely a stunning sight to see. The view from the top is spectacular and it’s no surprise that it is a must see sight in Cape Town. You can either hike up to the summit or take the aerial cable car. We took the cable car about an hour prior to sunset for R120 round trip (their discounted rate).
As the sun set, we were hiding in the clouds. The cold intensified rapidly. I was shivering and I could hear my teeth chatter through the wind. We escaped the cold for a few minutes by purchasing a bottle of wine at the market/restaurant located upstairs. We sipped the wine to warm our bodies and enjoy the last few minutes of sunlight.
Where to Eat:
For breakfast, we went down the street to Lolo’s Cafe. It is a hipster-ish restaurant that serves a variety of smoothies and breakfast cuisine. The food was amazing. My friend claims that they have the best Egg Benedict around!
Boulders Beach Lodge and Restaurant
We were famish after playing with the penguin and elected to eat at the nearest restaurant. We spotted Boulders Beach Lodge and Restaurant across the parking lot. I ordered a hamburger with fries. There wasn’t anything special about the hamburger but the fries were excellent. My friend ordered the vegetarian open sandwich and it was delicious! One thing I enjoy about South Africa is that they have a huge selection of vegetarian food. Kudos!